Culture Music Portraits

Meeting Her

concert her

I discovered Her randomly last year at my brother’s while listening to a compilation from the Rennes Transmusicales (a great festival if you want to discover upcoming musician), and I got hooked straight away by their song “5 minutes”.Her, is a duo formed by Simon and Victor who started in 2015 and launched last year their first tape simply called “Her Tape #1”. They will actually release their second one this month.

I took advantage of them coming to London for a concert a few months ago to meet with Victor just before they played and ask him a couple of questions. Many thanks Victor!

I also took the opportunity to tell you about the venue they were playing at, The Forge, which is really cool and offers among other great cocktails. Unfortunately, while looking for more info, I just saw they have just closed down earlier this month… What a shame…

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How did you story with music started?
My parents were listening to a lot of music and especially blues, my father is actually a musician and my mother a very good pianist, so music has always been part of my life. When I was around ten years old, I learnt to play the piano at the music academy where I later choose to focus on jazz and blues, musical styles which were resonating more with me.
On his side, Simon was playing the saxophone when he was younger which has allowed him to be thrown into jazz; and then, in high school, his admiration for Jimmy Hendrix led him to turn to the guitar.

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I have heard that you met in high school in Rennes, is that right?
Yes, we met in high school. We actually started a first band then (in 2009) which was called the Popopopos. After a few years, the band got separated but with Simon we wanted to continue doing music. So, that is how we started our duo and made a fresh start.

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How did you choose the name of your band?
The name didn’t come straight away, we were looking for a mysterious and sensual one, as our songs are very intimiste and a lot of our texts talk about our relationships with women. It is Simon’s mother who has written the recited part of our first first tape and which evokes what this name means for us.
“The woman doesn’t exist but there are women, no woman can represent the woman, to say them all, you would need all the women”

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What are your influences?
Our influences are soul music of the 60-70s, the “black music”, as well as minimalist electronic music. We really like FKA Twigs, Jamie XX, James Blake and Kendrick Lamar. For me Kendrick Lamar is encompassing these two influences with a minimalist yet sensual arrangement.
In terms of the texts, we have each a slightly different style, on my front, I really like the poetry of Ray Charles and Al Green, which is quite simple, without rhymes but with touching words talking about intimate topics. Simon, on his side, does play a lot more with rhymes and alliterations. It is perfect this way as it allows us to be more diverse.

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How do you work together?
We are both musicians and composers. Simon lives in Rennes, and I live in Paris, so we often compose separately a couple of titles and we meet up regularly in our studio in Dinard to review everything, and also take that opportunity to compose together.
In the end, we have quite a few titles already ready, an example is “Quite Like”, which we had already composed two years ago

I hope you have enjoyed discovering this band 🙂 By the way, if you are in London, they are playing again soon on the 26th of April at the Borderline.

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Have a nice day!
xxx
Helene

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